When you see overnight business success, it’s tempting to believe there must be some secret. Why do some companies thrive when so many others fail?
Perhaps there is no secret, only clever marketing techniques. PR is one such savvy (if not secret) strategy that some of the best companies use. That’s why the PR world saw an 11% growth last year.
As a small business owner, you might not have considered the merits of PR. Isn’t PR for the big guys? Well, the answer is no. Small business PR is a growing trend; we’ll explain why in this article.
So much is written on trendy online marketing strategies that it’s easy to forget about PR.
But PR is one of the few areas of marketing that’s successfully transferred from the traditional pre-internet world to the fast-paced promotion-orientated world of today.
PR is about getting your brand out in front of the public with an engaging, newsworthy broadcast about your company. It’s also known as a press release.
If you have something interesting, that small business press release could get picked up by major news sites. That gives your brand an instant marketing opportunity to potentially thousands of people, depending on the news site.
PR is also about managing that brand and how company news and information are disseminated across the internet.
There are occasions when brands (usually more famous brands) appear in the press in a negative news story. A PR team’s job is to turn this around and protect the brand’s reputation.
There’s a myth that PR is something used by big famous brands like Disney or Tesla. While it’s true that major multinationals love PR, it doesn’t tell the whole story.
PR is a hugely effective strategy for small businesses, even early-stage startups. The trick to getting the most out of PR is having the right approach, which we’ll explore further.
Does your business need PR? Or is it a nice-to-have? To answer that question, let’s examine the main benefits:
Good PR will help you develop a reputation in your industry. In some cases, if you demonstrate first-rate knowledge and authority, you could even become the go-to company in the press for interviews and quotes.
A strong reputation builds trust with your target customer, and that ultimately helps boost your sales.
If customers spot your company in a story on a well-known news site, they will know you’re a trustworthy business and will be more willing to buy from you.
You can get new customer inquiries or boost website traffic with a positive news story. Regular PR helps you get your name out there, which is essential for a small company.
It gives you brand awareness that’s hard to replicate elsewhere. It has a sort of snowball effect too. The more you improve your brand awareness, the easier it will be to get your PR featured on top sites.
Suppose you intend to expand your business via angel funds, venture capital, or crowdfunding.
Good, consistent PR will help you develop a reputation as a serious, ambitious business. It might be the extra plus point that helps you secure that vital investment.
You need regular leads for your business, and consistent PR efforts can help with that. As people learn about your business, you’ll see an upswing in signups to your email list (or call bookings if you’re a service business.)
You won’t have to go into sales mode to generate more revenue; new clients will seek you out instead.
PR sounds promising, but where should you begin? First, you need to use a company like ours with a pre-existing distribution network. But there are also things you can do from your side to ensure your PR efforts pay off.
The most effective PR happens when you understand your customer.
Create a profile, and examine their demographics, interests, and online behavior. That will help you create a targeted PR campaign that reaches the right people.
When you understand your audience, start thinking about what you want to achieve from your PR campaigns.
Do you want to build an extensive email list? Or do you want brand awareness? Are you expanding to a new country and want your PR campaign to help launch you in a new location?
You will probably want multiple PR campaigns that run over the year. But to do this properly, you’ll need to plan and ensure they align with your core objectives.
For example, if you have an upcoming product launch, work back from that to set a start date for your PR campaign.
Always take the time to measure your results. You’ll need analytics tools (e.g., Google Analytics) to measure the response to your PR efforts and ensure they link back to results for your business.
That might be traffic, leads, or some other metric. But whatever objective you go for, make it measurable.
There are lots of other ways to improve your PR results. Here are some helpful tips:
Always stay persistent with your PR strategy. If something isn’t working, it’s not a sign to stop but an indication you might need to pivot.
Are you ready to add PR to your marketing efforts in the coming year? There are compelling benefits, and it’s hard for any ambitious company to ignore the potential offered by a successful (perhaps viral) PR campaign.
For small business PR, you’ve come to the right place. We help all-sized companies get an easy and quick start with PR. Read about our PR writing and PR distribution services here to see how you can use PR today.